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Croydon’s historic machinery collection: A case study in the uses and needs of outback heritage machinery collections

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 December 2018

Jan Wegner
Affiliation:
janice.wegner@jcu.edu.au
Jana Kahabka
Affiliation:
janakahabka@yahoo.com.au
Corresponding

Abstract

One response to the development of tourism in small inland Queensland towns has been to collect heritage machinery from the surrounding countryside and display it in town as an attraction for visitors. These sites range from open-air collections of miscellaneous i3tems with no explanation of their use to both private and local government museums that are given varying levels of care and interpretation. The small north-western Queensland town of Croydon has a collection of heritage machinery in a number of sites, which range across this continuum. This article explores the potential of the collection to interpret the town’s history and the history of early gold mining, as a case study with application to other such collections.

Type
Museums and engagement in Queensland: Critical contributions to the field
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2018 

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References

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ibid.

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14 Croydon Mining News, 24 June 1910; Inspector of Mines Letterbook, p. 893, 7 January 1910, MIN 14B/G1, Queensland State Archives (QSA); Report of the Under-Secretary of Mines in Annual Report of the Department of Mines for 1910, p. 6.

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19 Queenslander, 11 May 1889, 912; Queenslander, 18 July 1891, 102; Croydon Mining News, 1 March 1889; Croydon Mining News, 12 August 1909; Croydon Mining Record, 19 May 1904; Cairns Northern Herald, 5 November 1915, 6.

20 For example, Jan Wegner interview with Gilbert Bennion at Tweed Heads, December 1985.

21 Mining News, 18 July 1895, Mining News, 8 July 1910.

22 Jan Wegner interview with Norman Rains at Townsville, 29 October 1994.

23 Cedric Hughes, pers. comm. with Jan Wegner (telephone call), April 2012.

24 Croydon Mining News, 9 September 1910.

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30 For example, Croydon Mining News, 11 March 1910.

31 For example, Cairns Post, 11 July 1913, 3.

32 See, for example, Croydon Mining Record, 25 May 1905.

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35 Locomotive history cards, item 326104, QSA; Normanton-Cloncurry Railway correspondence register, 24 April 1906, item 301952, QSA; Knowles, Lonely rails, pp. 17–20, 58.

36 Correspondence held by True Blue Information Centre, Croydon Shire Council.

37 Jana Kahabka, ‘Croydon’s BIG Metal Exhibition Project Management Plan’, November 2015, Croydon Shire Council.

ibid.

39 Wilson, ‘”I’ve got a brand new combine harvester”’, 21.

40 Dave Davies, Robey Trust, pers. comm. (email) to Jan Wegner, 25 March 2011.

41 Queensland Government Mining Journal, 15 October 1907, 508.

42 Brisbane Courier, 26 July 1884, 6; Brisbane Courier, 28 March 1885, 3; Croydon Mining News, 26 July 1907.

43 Of the mining towns, Charters Towers had two; Chillagoe had one, associated with the Chillagoe Smelters; and there was another at Irvinebank, attached to the tin mill and smelter there. There were also foundries at Longreach and Mareeba. All the rest were on or close to the coast (including Toowoomba and Ipswich, both of which have also closed in recent years).

44 Winkworth, Kylie, ‘Let a thousand flowers bloom: Museums in regional Australia’, in Griffin, and Paroissien, (eds), Understanding museums, http://nma.gov.au/research/understanding-museums/KWinkworth_2011.html, accessed 14 May 2017 [especially n. 2]Google Scholar.

45 This, of course, is a common problem for small rural museums worldwide. See Wilson, Lesley-Ann and Boyle, Emily, ‘The role of partnerships in the delivery of local government museum services: A case study from Northern Ireland’, International Journal of Public Sector Management 17(6) (2004), 522CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

46 Hassam, ‘Indian jute’, 116–17.

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